Versioning .NET Core in Visual Studio Team Services

I have always found it useful for applications to display their build version, and for libraries to have the build version in their properties. Relying on properties like the date (or file size) is always a bit risky.

.NET Core has embraced Semantic Versioning and at first glance appears to have a new way to specify version numbers.

It doesn’t quite work to my full satisfaction, but luckily the older methods still work, so a basic GitVersion task in your build pipeline is pretty much all you need to get things working.

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Seq TraceListener for System.Diagnostics

Following hot on the heels of v2 of Essential.Diagnostics, work on the beta version of the Essential.Diagnostics.SeqTraceListener has been completed, and it has been published to NuGet.

PM> Install-Package Essential.Diagnostics.SeqTraceListener

This provides a trace listener implementation that forwards messages to a Seq logging server. For performance it forwards messages in batches (with the first message being sent immediately, so you know the system is up and running), with automatic back off and retry when there are interruptions to the network communication.

This component can be used with the new Microsoft.Extensions.Logging for .NET 4.5.1 and above, or with Sytem.Diagnostics.TraceSource for .NET 2.0 through 4.5.

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Essential.Diagnostics v2

I have made significant changes in the organisation of the Essential.Diagnostics project; although none of the actual implementations have changed, the project has been split into separate packages for each trace listener, available via NuGet.

The packages are available on NuGet (Essential.Diagnostics), and the source code on CodePlex (Essential.Diagnostics).

The project also has a new logo:

essential-diagnostics-64

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The wrong policy approach to climate change

There are two interrelated aspects when discussing global warming and climate change: one is the validity of the science, and the other is the policy approach taken.

This post is about the policy approach taken, so rather than debate the science, assume there is a scenario where a producer is causing damage (external costs) to others, and consider what policy is appropriate in such a situation:

Climate Policy 0 - damage

For too long has the Left been allowed to own this issue, leading invariably to big government attempts at a solution. Given the track record of governments in handling environmental issues, this is not a good outcome.

Most current policy approaches to this situation are wrong because they are manifestly unfair.

It is time that we campaign to ensure that a fair, market-based, solution is achieved.

Below I will detail several of the current policy approaches being used, and show why they are wrong; I will then make the case why the libertarian approach, based on private property rights, is the correct solution.

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Minor Parties Vote Compass, Australian 2016 Federal Election

The ABC Vote Compass is a good tool for orientating yourself in the political spectrum but only showed the three major parties, as did Fairfax’s YourVote; the third party iSideWith did a bit better, including the other parties with elected Senators: Family First and the Liberal Democrats. Meanwhile, the international Political Compass, for some reason, included Katter’s Australian Party.

So, what about all the other minor parties? Well, here is my attempt at putting them on the graph:

Post - Vote Compass

Where possible, the results are based on an official email response from the party, otherwise, it is based on policy documents and other stated positions.

Being a classical liberal, I support both economic and social freedom, so am interested in the overall liberalism rating of parties, the forward diagonal, from the most control-leaning (bottom-left) to freedom-leaning (top-right).

Post - Liberalism

In this post, I provide the calculated results for the parties, presented across several different dimensions, as well as the full details of the calculations.

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ABC Vote Compass 2016 diagonal bias

For the 2016 election, the ABC Vote Compass has a diagonal bias embedded in some of the questions, reinforcing the major party axis and making it impossible to score highly (or lowly) in both economic freedom (Economic Right) and social freedom (Social Progressive) at the same time.

Due to the structure of the questions, final results are only possible within the shaded area, and can never reach the top right or bottom left corners.

EDIT (2016-06-23): It is possible to get in the top right (or bottom left) by answering “Don’t Know” (rather than the middle answer) to the six diagonal questions. Results are scaled to only the questions you answer (this also scales the position of the parties to those same questions). The limitation applies if you answer every question. Also, the actual limit is slightly curved (not a straight line), as each question has a slightly different economic/social ratio, so it is actually possible to do slightly better than all-neutral answers.

Vote Compass 2016 - diagonal bias

Vote Compass 2016 – diagonal bias

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Proportional Representation

There are many different criteria by which voting systems can be evaluated.

One of the most important criteria to me is proportional representation. Closely related to this are transferrable vote systems, which help maintain proportionality.

I was surprised to find out, after moving state within Australia to Queensland, to find out that it was the only state without some form of proportional representation!

All other states have an Upper House elected by proportional representation. The Lower Houses are formed from single member electorates, and so absolutely dominated by the major parties with no proportionality, but the bicameral parliament ensures some measure of democracy is maintained.

(Effectively, with the Lower House always dominated by one party or the other, there is never any possible meaningful debate there; the government will always win, every time. The only real debate, negotiation and compromise, or possibility of failure, occurs in the Upper House.)

As shown in the graphs below, at a federal level, there is already a degree of bias towards the major parties (getting more seats than the proportionally should), due to the high quotas (low number of positions) in the Senate. Recent proposed changes will make this even worse, with the 18% of voters for minor parties reduced to a single seat (2% of the parliament).

AU - 2013 Senate and Senators

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